Innovation and portfolio evolution
SITA innovates collaboratively, taking on the risks of technology investigations through Proof-of-Concepts (POCs), trials, and pilot projects—mindful that not all research will always become a SITA portfolio solution. The approach includes partnering and co-innovating with airline, airport, and border customers, proven innovative companies, early-stage ventures, and universities.
Key areas of collaboration
Trials, POCs, and other research projects underway in 2020 and 2021 are looking at new and emerging technologies across the journey, supply chains, and operations, including biometrics for digital identity, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, Machine Learning, blockchain, and digital health credentials.
Biometrics innovation investments took place in 2020 to continuously enhance SITA Smart Path, including Smart Path Mobile. A new global partnership with NEC combines SITA Smart Path's ground-breaking passenger processing capabilities with NEC's cutting-edge identification technologies to deliver the future of digital identity at airports.
The Digital ID research program is a major focus of SITA's Lab. As part of the program, SITA stepped up its commitments to developing a permanent digital identity for air travel in 2020 as a Premium Donor of the Sovrin Foundation. The Foundation advances blockchain self-sovereign digital identity to give individuals sole ownership and control of their identity.
Blockchain continues to be pioneered by SITA with the initiation of key industry projects under the umbrella of the SITA Global Blockchain Alliance. The alliance is made up of leading organizations covering every aspect of the Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) chain, from parts manufacturer and repairs to shipment and air cargo supply chain, flight information, baggage customs clearance, Digital Health Certificates, and more.
Digital health credentials exchanged securely among health authorities, providers, governments, airlines, and airports is a critical goal for the travel industry as it recovers. As part of the SITA Lab's Digital Identity research program, work started in 2020 on digitally verifiable health credentials.